No, I am not recommending you follow your passion.
This 3-word phrase, “follow your passion” is referred to like the almighty north star towards anyone, anywhere, who is trying to find their way to career path happiness.
Whatever you do, don’t listen to your well-meaning friend when they tell you to just follow your passions.
Most people associate this idea of “follow your passion” with an end result of being able to do what you love and reaching a euphoric state of work-life bliss you get to enjoy the rest of your life. But does it really work like that? Does doing something you’re passionate about always lead you here?
‘Do what you love’
Is this better advice? Will this make you happiest? Nope, this won’t get you there either.
Why do I think following your passion and doing what you love are misguided goals when it comes to finding joy and contentment in your work?
5 reasons ‘Follow Your Passion’ Is Not the Best Advice to Loving What You Do
1) Look at people who really love what they do…
When you look at most successful people, you always think they must love what they do. And they usually do. Why? How did they get so lucky? People who are good at what they do are successful because everyone loves them doing it. So these successful people love doing it for them… it’s very simple. People who really love what they do, love doing it because they are good at it and other people love them doing it.
So is it “do what you love?” Or “love what you do?“
2) Passions are ever in flux…
Ok, follow your passion. But which passion should you follow? What are you most passionate about? Right now? Passions change over time. Think about what you were passionate about at 21 vs. now. What will you be passionate about ten years from now?
3) What if you’re not good at your passion?
I wouldn’t say because you love singing means you should be a singer.
This won’t result in doing something you love because others won’t love you doing it.
4) It’s a selfish approach…
Following your passion is a very “me” centered approach to life….
“How can I follow my passion?” This is self-centered and self-focused. The only person you are worried about is yourself. Instead, the question you should ask is “how can I best contribute?” This is others-focused and will be much more rewarding in the long term. You will find you are much more content pursuing this endeavor in your lifetime.
When you do something you are very good at and you don’t mind doing, you might find people love you doing it. This, in turn, makes you love doing it and you, in fact, will love what you do.
5) There’s a Better Approach
Follow your contribution is better advice. What can you most help the world by doing? What are you best at doing? How can you best contribute? This will ultimately make you much, much happier. It is focused on others instead of yourself. You will love what you do so much more because of this.
Follow Your Contribution: A guaranteed approach to loving what you do…
When you positively affect the lives of those around you, you feel positive about yourself and what you are doing.
So why are doing what you are doing? It’s a good thing to ask yourself.
Contribute. Think of a unique way you can contribute and do it. You will love the work that you do.